Like little stars.
In the face of California’s ongoing and devastating drought, the No. 1 thing we should be concerned about is drinking water. Then, agriculture. Less dire, but still concerning: what the water shortage will mean for local breweries.
The 110-mile Russian River in Northern California is not only a source of drinking water to half a million people, it’s where craft beer from Lagunitas Brewing Co. gets its unique taste. And now it’s drying up. NPR reports on the impending crisis:
…in the wake of 2013, the driest year ever recorded in California, Lagunitas’ owners say they’re nervous about shortages that could mean a switch from the river water to not-as-tasty well water.
“If [the county] shifts us over to groundwater, we’d have to sacrifice our nice water supply — that unique, signature, clean Russian River water,” says Jeremy Marshall, head brewer at Lagunitas.
The problem with groundwater, he says, is that it’s heavy in minerals that don’t go well with beer.
“It would be like brewing with Alka-Seltzer,” Marshall says.
…Marshall says any off-flavors in the well water might not show through in a malty, bitter beer. However, the minerals could coax undesirable flavors from grainy and hoppy styles.
“A beer that might normally taste crisp and refreshing could have an astringent taste — kind of planky, like Popsicle stick,” Marshall says.
As with wine — which is also suffering — now may be the time to stock up. Just be sure to pour one out for California.
Lindsay Abrams is a staff writer at Salon, reporting on all things sustainable. Follow her on Twitter @readingirl, email email@example.com.More Lindsay Abrams.
Like little stars.
World's best pie apple. Essential for Tarte Tatin. Has five prominent ribs.
So pretty. So early. So ephemeral. Tastes like strawberry candy (slightly).
My personal fave. Ultra-crisp. Graham cracker flavor. Should be famous. Isn't.
High flavored with notes of blood orange and allspice. Very rare.
Jefferson's favorite. The best all-purpose American apple.
New Hampshire's native son has a grizzled appearance and a strangely addictive curry flavor. Very, very rare.
Makes the best hard cider in America. Soon to be famous.
Freak seedling found in an Oregon field in the '60s has pink flesh and a fragrant strawberry snap. Makes a killer rose cider.
Ben Franklin's favorite. Queen Victoria's favorite. Only apple native to NYC.
Really does taste like pineapple.